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Firefighters quickly doused a kitchen fire on Walker Street on Monday morning.

North Adams Fire Quickly Extinguishes Walker Street Blaze

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Fire Department quickly extinguished a kitchen fire on Walker Street on Monday morning and contained much of the damage to two rooms in the home. 
"It was a quick response, quick knockdown, and we are going to be out of here soon," Fire Chief Stephen Meranti said. "Unfortunately, the occupants are going to have to deal with the damage."
The call came in just before 9 a.m., and Meranti said police were first to arrive at 100 Walker St. and confirmed it was a structure fire. Lt. Brent Lefebvre was on scene soon after with Engine 1.
"We had smoke showing from the eaves all of the way around the building," Meranti said. "They had heavy smoke conditions in the building."
Meranti said he initially thought firefighters would have to vent the roof, but the fire was mostly contained o the kitchen so this was not necessary. There were no injuries.
"The occupants were out, and the firefighters rescued two dogs," he said.
Meranti said the fire seemed to have started in the kitchen around the stove, and he was waiting to talk to the occupants to get a better sense of the cause.
The kitchen and living room took the brunt of the damage. The rest of the home sustained smoke damage.
Meranti said because it was a confirmed structure fire all off-duty personnel were called. The oncoming shift was also called but was called off en route once the fire was contained.
Meranti said firefighters had access to a working hydrant, but the Clarksburg Fire Department tanker truck was called just in case.
Northern Berkshire EMS was also on scene.
Emergency vehicles left the scene around 10 a.m. with the fire largely extinguished before 9:30.
"That is the key. Early notification, a quick response, and a rapid interior attack," Meranti said. "They got on scene, stretched the line to the fire, and they did a good job."

Tags: structure fire,   

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North Adams Council to Review Hydrant Ordinance Next Week

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The City Council on Tuesday referred an ordinance change regarding fire hydrants to the General Government Committee over the originator's protests. 
City Councilor Jason LaForest had initially submitted the proposal for the creation of a "Fire Hydrant Division" with a request to refer to his Public Safety Committee but on Tuesday night instead asked it be fast-tracked to publication and a second reading. 
The rest of the council balked at taking a shortcut in the process, rejecting the motion and voting 8-1 to send the language to the General Government with only LaForest voting no. 
The ordinance relates to issues regarding non-functioning fire hydrants and how information is shared between the Water Department and police dispatch. Two recent fires highlighted problems with the hydrants; officials say about 130 of the 631 hydrants in the city are nonfunctioning in some way. The city has been working for a decade to address faulty hydrants of which nearly half had been dysfunctional back in 2011. 
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